You might have assumed bullying was left in the schoolyard and that once you enter the world of work, bullying becomes a distant memory. Unfortunately, some bullies never grow out of their behavior, and they are as happy to be workplace bullies as they were school bullies. How do you deal with workplace bullying if it happens to you?
What Constitutes Bullying?
Bullies can be subtle, and they can dress their behavior up as a passing comment or an in-house joke. This can leave you wondering if you are a victim or just a bad sport.
Bullying is behavior that upsets you or causes you psychological harm. It occurs repeatedly so you know it isn’t just a passing comment. It is designed to make you feel intimidated or excluded and you may feel powerless to do anything about it, especially if your bully is in a position of power. However, you have more power than you might think.
Stand Up For Yourself
Bullies are often cowards at heart who pick on people because they think those people won’t retaliate. Prove them wrong by standing up to them and telling them to stop their behavior, as it is unwanted and unwelcome. Have this conversation in front of witnesses if it makes you feel more comfortable but keep your cool and don’t let this incident turn into an argument, otherwise, you could get into trouble.
Keep A Diary
If this doesn’t work, then keep a diary and record incidents of bullying when they happen. Include your own emotions, as this can be important later if the bully is taken to task over their behavior.
Speak To Witnesses
If others have witnessed your bully’s behavior towards you then speak to them and ask if they would be happy to act as a witness for you. It may be that you are not the only victim of this bully, so ask if potential witnesses have seen or heard anyone else being treated this way. If there is more than one victim, you will be able to build a stronger case if you want to make a complaint.
Speak To Your HR Department
An employer has a duty of care towards their employees so any complaint you make about workplace bullying has to be taken seriously and investigated accordingly. Your HR department will be trained in how to deal with these issues, and you may find that others have already stepped forward to complain about the bully and made HR aware of the problem.
Get Legal Advice
If you don’t get the outcome you want from your company’s HR department or you would like advice on your legal rights, it is best to use a law firm that specializes in workplace bullying issues and can give you some great advice based on their previous experience. Visit https://www.rblaw.net/practices-hazing-bullying-intimidation for more information.
You do not have to suffer in silence if you think you have been the victim of workplace bullying. Follow the steps in this guide to give you peace of mind and the best outcome for you.